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The 10 Biggest AWS News Stories Of 2020 (So Far)

CRN looks at the largest cloud provider’s top headline-grabbing product releases and moves on issues ranging from JEDI to racial injustice to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Amazon Web Services continued its fast pace of innovation and revenue growth this year, with first-quarter earnings that had it eclipsing a $40 billion annual run rate for the first time.

The Seattle-based cloud computing unit of tech giant Amazon – the largest among rivals Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud – introduced new AWS services and solutions ranging from the smallest member of its Snow line of portable edge devices to Amazon Honeycode, which allows customers to build mobile and web applications without writing programming code, to sixth-generation Amazon EC2 C6g and R6g instances powered by Arm-based AWS Graviton2 processors.

Several of the top AWS news stories so far in 2020 aligned with the top headlines nationally. AWS CEO Andy Jassy took to Twitter to comment on the unjust killings of Black people following the death of George Floyd while in the custody of Minneapolis police in May. Amid the sweeping protests that Floyd’s death ignited, AWS announced a one-year ban on police using Amazon Rekognition, its facial recognition technology.

AWS also is aiding research efforts to combat the deadly coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, committing $20 million to a new program focused on diagnostic solutions.

The company made some bold moves in its continued legal battle over the U.S. Department of Defense’s selection of Microsoft Azure -- instead of the highly favored AWS cloud -- for its potentially $10 billion Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) cloud computing contract, even seeking to depose U.S. President Donald Trump.

Here’s a look at the top 10 AWS news stories of the year to date, including how Jassy says video conferencing by remote workers has changed AWS thinking and how the cloud provider is increasing its stake in the “final frontier.”

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